Editor’s Note: The following book review appears in the Spring 2020 issue of Eikon.
Alice Matthews. Gender Roles and the People of God: Rethinking What We Were Taught about Men and Women in the Church. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017.
In Gender Roles and the People of God, Mathews considers modern evangelicalism’s “third rail” issue—the role of women in the church. Her aim is to challenge traditional complementarian theology and advocate for an egalitarian reading of Scripture. Based on teaching notes that developed over decades as a professor at Gordon-Conwell, Mathews’s book surveys the relevant texts on women in the history of redemption and in the church, the theological underpinnings of complementarian theology, as well as how the church’s perception of women has changed throughout its history — often in ways that oppress or demean women.
While Mathews’s work has some significant problems, I do want to express…